Summertime Remembering


Coming home from Zachary is always a drag
You have to eat you last snowball
And soak in some final rays of sun
Before sitting in a car for nine hours
Watching the trees go by
Imagining you’re running
Outside along the highway rails
You get back to Fenbrook Way
And it’s Still Elementary
No more crawfish or gumbo
But it’s somehow more developed
You exchange a doublewide for a three story
And are struck with the loss of the gain
Somehow empty in your soul
Food is less spicy
Faces less black
And when you laugh
Like you did with your cousins
A star falls
And you cry at the loss
Because falling stars don’t rise again
They tell you you’ve gotten darker
And they’ll never understand
That words hurt
More than getting you hair hot combed
Or falling on asphalt
After they’ve convinced you to play
Cowboys and Indians
And you’re somehow the cowboy
And you know it’s wrong but not why
You’re always the last one to be pick for RedRover
And if they invite you to come over
You don’t want to spend the night
Because you’re afraid to wear a durag
In front of smiling white faces
So you stay home

--Erin Hardnett